Thursday, May 28, 2015

Amy Poehler's Smart Girls: Just Breathe

On her website, Amy Poehler's Smart Girls, there is a video entitled, "Just breathe." It is a wonderful short examining what happens to the body and brain when we get angry or excited and how to counteract the rush of emotions. Great video and ideas to control emotions.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Psychology Teacher Resources by THSP

In an attempt to share resources among teachers in the modern world, we tried the 4-shared database for a number of years. Over time, it became clunky and unwieldy. Then I created a google site as a prototype, but the data allowed on any one site was minimal and links needed to be added rather than files being uploaded.

Then Google Drive came to us through a variety of suggestions. The current organization is much like the blog, with the units being numbered consistent with the AP Psych course outline--14 units.

The link for the drive can be found here:

If you have an outstanding assignment that you would like to add to the mix, please send the file to this email or send us a link for us to download, review, and add the file to the drive.

The email for this new GDrive account is:

We are uploading only items that are commonly shared/personally created and that are not copyright violations, so no videos or other works that are owned by someone else. We can access those via other methods.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Are we done yet?

 Today is the last day for students in my district - are you all done? Are you ready for summer? Hope that your year ended/is ending well, and hope that you get a well-deserved break!

We'll keep posting resources here on the blog, and if any of you get energized this summer and want to give us resources to post, please holler! (links to our emails are in the left column, under "THSP Moderators")

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Sympathy v Empathy

RSA Animates is now doing a short series of videos called "espresso for the mind". The first one I found is called "Sympathy versus Empathy." It does a great job of explaining how one should be listening to someone with a problem as well as cite our typical responses that create disconnection. Thanks to Brene Brown and RSA for this video.

Just excellent.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Potential Job in London

I was forwarded this email by an American Psych colleague to share for those who may be interested in teaching in London. Below are details and contact information. This information is for sharing purposes only.

We are looking for an experienced AP Psychology teacher, knowledge of the IB Diploma programme is advantageous. Any assistance you could provide in posting this position in a suitable forum would be most appreciated. Our website is and you can use my email ( as the person to contact. - Christopher Walker, Principal

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Friday, May 15, 2015

MIT Videos

I was reading my weekly Scout report and they wrote about a video repository that MIT has online at
Here is the link for a psychology search:

This is Zimbardo's talk on how people do evil things:

Here is another talk on the brain and disorders:

There are quite a few others with psych connections. These videos are for professionals who wish to learn, they are not geared toward high school students.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Dive into Research!

Toward the end of the year, some teachers look for "let's pull it all together" activities. Psychology students often hear about research studies, and summaries of studies, but it can be VERY useful for students to actually dive into published studies as a critical thinking exercise. Students have been studying psychology for the whole course - now can they apply their knowledge and "think like a psychologist" about research?

Here are some resources that might be useful if any of you want to tackle this:
  • Christopher Green developed and maintains a great archive of "Classics in the History of Psychology" - you can find many/most of the older classic studies in their original form. Students could read the original publication and compare it with the summaries made in textbooks and elsewhere.
  • Many teachers use the 40 Studies that Changed Psychology book as a resource - great, important studies, good summaries.
  • The Whitman Journal of Psychology publishes high school student psych research - these studies are written by high school students and may be shorter/more accessible (and may contain "flaws" that students should be able to identify?)
  • Glenn Duggan (@GlennDuggan) sent this fascinating, in-depth article about how science can go "wrong." This is high-level reading, but could be a great article for students who are ready to think critically about the reliability and validity of research findings:

Please share other resources in the comments and I'll update this post. Happy researching!

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Friday, May 8, 2015

Social Psychology - Social Networks!

Do any of you use "Social Networks" as examples during your Social Psychology units? I'd love to hear how you all tie Facebook, Twitter, etc. to psych. concepts.

Some resources about this topic:

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Top 20 Psychology Principles for Teachers

AP Psych folks: hope the test went GREAT for you and your students!

Now that the test is over, maybe there's time to think/talk about other stuff, like this interesting document from the APA:

Top 20 Psychology Principles for Teachers

This interesting document is the result of a LOT of work by the Center for Psychology in Schools of Education (CPSE - part of the APA). TOPSS helped edit the document. I think it's a great example of USING the concepts/theories we talk about in high school psychology in an applied setting - teaching! I'm promoting the use of this document in my district (conversations with other teachers, staff development workshops, etc.) I know the CPSE would love to hear comments from you all, and if you end up using it for something, please let me know!

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Monday, May 4, 2015

Get after it, AP Psych-ers!

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Friday, May 1, 2015

Last Minute Prep ideas!

This idea came from
Julie Muskopf from Iroquois Senior High School - would be great to hear some responses (and maybe some of you could use them!)

"What are the essential last minute prep activities/reminders you plan on doing with your classes Monday morning before the AP test?"

posted by Rob McEntarffer

DSM 5 and the AP Psych test: What is the big deal?

There has been a lot (a LOT) of chatter in the AP Psych community about the implications of the change from DSM IV TR to DSM 5. Depending on who you listen to, the impact is either HUGE or little.

Here's the "official word" from College Board:

"The fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) was published in May 2013 with revisions to the criteria for the diagnosis and classifications of mental disorders.
Beginning with the 2015 AP Psychology Exam, all terminology, criteria and classifications referred to among multiple-choice and free-response items will adhere to the new fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5)." 

That's a nice, clear message, but based on email/twitter/AP Central discussion board chatter, many AP teachers seem to disagree about how big a deal this change will be in terms of items on the exam. Some teachers seem to think it will cause major changes, and they are spending quite a bit of time working with students to understanding the changed features in DSM 5 , while others aren't sweating it and continue to focus on the information their textbook provides about psychological disorders.

My opinion, for what it's worth (and it may not be worth much - I'm not teaching AP Psych right now): the important understanding about the DSM for students remains the same as it ever was - they need to know that the function of the book is to categorize and provide official labels/descriptions of disorders, and that it's mostly used by clinicians for insurance purposes. I don't think it's worth the time to dive deeply into changes in the DSM (including the elimination of the Axis system, etc.)

Please chime in the comments section and let us know what you're doing, if anything, regarding DSM 5 in your classrooms.

(image source:

posted by Rob McEntarffer